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We Work Again

Published 1937

05:11:27:00 We Work Again

Amazing glimpse of African-American life during the Great Depression.
This film acknowledges the fact that African-Americans were
disproportionately unemployed. There are scenes of forward-looking programs
of housing renovation and public works in Harlem, as well as pre-school and
adult education. However, there are also some painful scenes in which
African-American women - "girls" - are being trained as cooks and maids, or
being taught child care with white dolls.

05:11:50:00 med shot of African-American man sitting on pavement, head on
VO - "Only a few years ago..."
05:11:52:00 MCU of African-American man sitting in front of brick wall
VO - "...we were a discouraged people."
05:11:53:00 MCU of older African American man reading newspaper on front
VO - "Because we were the first to lose our jobs...
05:11:55:00 MCU of another older African American man sitting on steps,
looking dejected
VO - "...when old man depression came along, and the last..."
05:11:57:00 med wide shot of African American man sitting on front stoop,
older African American woman watching him, going inside doorway
VO - " get them back, we struggled vainly..."
05:11:59:00 MCU of several young African American men reading newspaper
VO - " regain our bearings while depression,..."
05:12:01:00 MCU of African American man lighting cigarette
VO - "... fear, and failure stalked the nation."
05:12:03:00 MCU of young African American man carving piece of wood with
VO - "A tenth of the population..."
05:12:05:00 med shot of two African-American men seated at campfire -
Hooverville scene
VO - "... of the United States, we formed as a race..."
05:12:07:00 med shot of two African-American men seated on steps
VO - "...over a sixth of the unemployed."
05:12:09:00 med wide shot of African-American woman seated on stoop with
head in hands
VO - "One in four of us was on relief."

05:17:27:00 med shot of kitchen - three African-American women working as
VO - "As part of the program of rehabilitation..."
05:17:30:00 MCU of one cook’s hands making cookie/tea cake
VO - "...and the conservation of human resources, a number of household
training schools have been established by WPA. In these schools, girls from
relief families are prepared for domestic work which will make them
self-supporting. Others take the course to learn the arts of homemaking..."
05:17:44:00 med shot of African-American women working in institutional
VO - "...for use in their own homes. In modern kitchens under competent
05:17:47:00 MCU of woman’s hand preparing food
VO - "...the girls are taught to cook and to prepare salads and other
delicacies which add much to everyday meals."
05:17:53:00 med shot of woman taking sheet of cookies from oven
05:18:00:00 med wide shot of African-American women in maid’s uniforms
making bed
VO - "Here’s where you may be able to learn something: this is the way the
girls are taught to make..."
05:18:05:00 MCU of woman’s hands tucking in corners of sheet
VO - "...beds, an art which [sound problem]"

05:18:11:00 med shot of African-American woman in maid outfit fluffing huge
white pillows, making bed
VO - "These household training courses have already sent hundreds of girls
out into the world well able to secure domestic positions and able to
command skilled workers’ wages."

05:18:22:00 med shot of African-American nurse with white baby doll showing
two young African-American woman how to hold a baby
VO - "Health education is an important part of the WPA program. At a number
of health centers in large cities, qualified instructors..."(05:18:29:00)
05:18:30:00 MCU of African-American nurse’s hands caring for white baby doll
VO - "...teach groups of women first aid methods and the proper care of

Producer Pathe News (?)
Production Company U.S. Works Projects Administration (WPA)
Sponsor U.S. Federal Works Agency, Works Projects Administration (WPA)
Audio/Visual sound, color


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